While perhaps not the cheeriest of subjects, you may have unfortunately found yourself in the situation where you and your children are faced with the concept of death. As a parent, few things in life are harder to explain, especially when your children could be so young.
Fortunately, there are several books out there that are designed to help with the explanation process and ensure you can tackle this challenging subject in the best and most beneficial way that remains empathetic and compassionate. Here are the seven books you need to know.
1. The Goodbye Book (link)
Starting off this list, the Goodbye Book, written by Todd Parr, is a very simple book at heart that addresses a lot of complex issues. The book addresses a lot of the emotions and responses your child may experience and give, teaching you and your child how to deal with how you feel, and assures that there are brighter times ahead.
2. Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children (link)
Lifetimes is written with younger children in mind, settling in around the 5-8 years old range. Lifetimes is an incredibly moving book that looks at the concept of both life and death in a very beautiful, compassionate way.
Lifetimes talks about both beginnings and ends and how our lives are the stories in-between. It includes references to plants, animals, and people, and with over 700 five-star ratings, this is definitely a book you’ll want to consider.
3. The Invisible String (link)
The Invisible String is a Number 1 Best Seller for a reason. With over 500,000 copies sold and nearly 10,000 five-star ratings, this book for children is all about love and the ‘invisible string’ that connects each and every one of us. Even though separation. Even through death.
There are all kinds of emotions and feelings covered in this book, including anxiety, grief, loss, despair, and more. The book also covers all the questions your children may ask, including how long the string goes, will the string ever go away, and does everybody has the string?
This is a really beautiful book, and even if you’re not dealing with loss right now, this book is still a gem to read.
4. I Will Always Love You (link)
A very highly rated children’s book, and for a good reason. Written by Hans Wilhelm, this story follows Elfie, the. Dachshund dog owned by her owner. They have an amazing life together, but the moral is shared that sometimes, goodbyes are an essential part of that journey. The book is written in a very sensitive way to help children understand the process.
5. I Miss You: A First Look at Death (link)
For really young children, around the ages of four or older, I Miss You is the ideal book. For a child, it can be incredibly difficult to express the emotions they feel after a loved one has passed away, and this book aims to help with opening up with how they feel and then being able to deal with those feelings.
6. Great Answers to Difficult Questions About Death (link)
If you’re looking for a book to help you prepare yourself and your own knowledge on how to address the concept of death to your own children, especially if you have older children above the age of eight going into their teenage years, this book could be ideal.
As the title suggests, this book is filled with challenging and probably unpredictable questions that could come up around the idea of death and then provides you with the facts and insights to reply in the most empathetic, realistic, and emotionally stable way possible.
7. Ida, Always (link)
A beautifully written book, Ida, Always follows the story of two polar bears who live together in the city zoo. One day Ida gets very ill and passes away, and the book follows the rising and falling emotions that follow the other polar bear, Gus. If you’re dealing with a situation where a loved one is terminally ill, this could be the perfect book you’ve been looking for.